Full Moon of Werewolves: Where wolf? There. & Prize!

Full Moon of Werewolves Schedule

About today’s guest: Maria Lima
Maria Lima is a writing geek with one foot in the real world and the other in the make-believe. One lucky commenter will win copies of Maria’s first two books. Just leave a comment on this post to be entered. Winner will be announced at end of Full Moon promotion. Last day to enter Saturday, April 25th at midnight central U.S. time.

Blood BargainDespite their origins in horror and war, werewolves continue to hold a strong number two place in fictional supernatural beings (with our favorite bloodsuckers as number one). Okay, so zombies are on the rise (yes, yes, I know…) but if you scan most urban fantasy/paranormal romance novels, you’ll still find vampire and werewolves running neck and neck. (Egads, the puns!)

Seriously, though–why the wolf? What is so fascinating and fabulous about these furry predators that not only do we have centuries of legends about humans becoming them, so many fantasy novels either feature or include these lycanthropes?

It’s not like most U.S. writers have much personal knowledge of actual wolves outside of stories, TV or movies. They’re not easy to find in the lower 48; the grey wolf has been hunted nearly to extinction. The red wolf, once extinct, now have a small officially endangered population in the Southeast.*

Perhaps it’s because a full grown wolf is a sexy beast, reminiscent of man’s best friend, yet with a wildness and danger adding a hint of spice–although, in reality, a predator and maybe not so sexy. Could be that our collective unconscious is reminded of the many legends of the hypermasculine warriors, leading long-ago tribes into battle and translating that into a need for an alpha male (or in some cases, female). Or maybe, just maybe, there’s that part of us that knew that there was more to the story of Little Red Riding Hood than was on the surface–we internalized its sexuality, its underlying themes and wanted more.

Whatever the reason, wolves and their fantasy counterparts (whether wer, shapeshifter or skinwalker) definitely add a bit of je ne sais quoi to our reading. We love them. We love to hate them if they’re the bad guy or gal. We love to read about them, tell stories, make them part of our fantasy world.

Personally, I love the fascinating family structure in the wolf world.
The pack, with its extremely defined and complex make up thrills the social/cultural anthropologist in me. I adore watching people and thew way they interact and the way a wolf pack works is so very easy to translate into fiction; mimicking its strict hierarchies and morphing those into human/wer behavior totally flips my tortilla.

Matters of the BloodThis is where it gets really fun: making my own world, adapting legend, myth, as well as historical, cultural and physiological facts into my version of what reality is. For those of us that write, isn’t that part of what makes it so damned sexy? Making up a fantasy world, especially one set in contemporary times, like my Blood Lines series, gives me the ability to build in my own rules and behaviors, making it work for me and and getting to create challenges for my characters.

For example, in my world, shapeshifters and werewolves are completely different–ahem–animals (pun totally intended). Shapeshifting is a magickal ability, inherited by certain members of the supernatural clan my protagonist belongs to. If you’re a shapeshifter, you can choose which animal to emulate, and, once changed–a process that is neither painful nor physically draining–you retain your humanlike qualities, including the ability to reason.

Wers, on the other hand, become the animal (their human sides are there, but suppressed) and are limited to one particular species (wolf, deer, etc.). I’ve even considered how to deal with skinwalkers, which, in their own way, work better for me as yet a third “animal”–something created by magickal means, via a spell, a potion, runes, something not inherent in someone’s nature.

So far, in the first three books, I’ve only dealt with shapeshifters, but in book 4, as yet untitled, I’ll be introducing a werewolf clan, with troubles and social rules all their own. Since I’ve just started to write it, who knows, maybe I can toss in a skinwalker or two…

I’m not sure if I’ll ever focus specifically on werewolves, but I can definitely promise that they’ll definitely have a fairly prominent place in this book.

If you’re looking for some reading choices (outside of the books of other guest authors here), here are some of my favorites:

Werewolves:
Patricia Brigg’s Mercy Thompson series
Harry Potter series (who doesn’t love Remus Lupin?)
The Graveyard Book (Neil Gaiman) (Mrs. Lupescu!!)
Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden novels (Billy & the werewolves!)
Kelley Armstrong’s Women of the Otherworld series
Blood Trail (Tanya Huff)

Other recommended reading/watching in general:
A Companion to Wolves (Elizabeth Bear & Sarah Monette)
Brotherhood of the Wolf (an obscure but fascinating French film)
The Howling (cheese, but so tasty)

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41 Responsesto “Full Moon of Werewolves: Where wolf? There. & Prize!”

  1. Kristen says:

    My favorite werewolf books are the Wulfs of London by the late Ronda Thompson.

  2. Becky Ward says:

    Loved the post. That is what I like best about fiction, you can let your imagination run wild. I have just started reading Patricia Brigg’s Mercy Thompson series, so far I really like them.

  3. Judi says:

    I’m just grateful that there are so many talented writers who have amazingly diverse paranormal characters for me to fall in love with. I love ‘em all. :D

    Fascinating post Maria. I enjoy learning about how an author comes up with thier characters & worldbuilding.

  4. Maria Lima says:

    @Kristen – I’d not heard of that book. Thanks for the rec!

    @ Becky & Judi – Thanks! I truly love the freedom of writing in this genre. So much fun to world-build, to create this complex structure, but yet make it believable.

    All, thanks for stopping by!

  5. Roberta Harwell says:

    Hello Maria,

    Your books sound interesting. Would love to win them. Have a great day.

  6. catie james says:

    It’s funny because I wasn’t into weres for the longest time; only in the last few years have I gotten off the vampire bandwagon and joined the shapeshifting/skinwalking/were-loving crowd. Can’t wait to read books 3 & 4 in the series!

  7. InkGypsy says:

    It’s always interesting to hear a writer musing on their creations and what prompts them to write. Urban fantasy has potential for many, many layers within the stories and the individually created mythologies. It’s interesting to hear how they got under your skin (so to speak). Thank you for sharing.

    Werewolves have always fascinated me. I love discovering new ways authors use the myth and make it their own. The one that stands out for me as being completely different is Benighted by Kit Whitfield. Her world is one where werewolves are the norm and ‘barebacks’ are shunned yet required for the role they play in keeping society together during full moons.

    I think werewolves have a lot of stories left to tell. Our fascination with them is far from over. I look forward to reading as many as I can.

  8. kanarytx says:

    Thank you for your post. I enjoyed the Forever knight TV series,and To Die for 2 movie. I will have to add your books to my list of books. They sound fascinating.

  9. Jamie says:

    The Dark Hunters book I am reading right now have to of the funniest Werewolves in it. I have laughed my butt off at them. Thank for the great post.

  10. Teresa W. says:

    I’m always looking for new authors and series to read, your reads sound great!

  11. Zita says:

    MaryJanice Davidson’s Wyndham Werewolves are some of my favourites, along with those you listed. She managed to make us believe in a werewolf that can’t turn into a werewolf, can you imagine? :lol: I think another part of the attraction is that we’re told wolves mate for life, so we allow ourselves to believe that werewolves do, too. Thanks for the post!

    Zita

  12. flip says:

    Thanks for the article. I haven’t read the Graveyard book yet. I will check into it.

  13. Jody F. says:

    Thanks for giving us a listing of werewolf books. Some of those titles were new to me.

  14. The_Book_Queen says:

    I haven’t read either one of your books yet, but they book sound really interesting! On my list they go! ;) :D

  15. Thanks, I now have some more books to add to my TBR list! :D

  16. Tracy says:

    Your books sound really good. I love that you’ve made different kinds of shapeshifters/wer in the same book. I’d love to read them.

  17. Colleen says:

    I love the variety that authors bring! Your books sound wonderful, I have to get my hands on them! :D

  18. It’s always fascinating to read the author’s thought processes re: worldbuilding. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing. I have to admit to being a vamp and werewolf fan myself! Ah, so many books, movies, etc. and so very little tiime!

  19. Donna S says:

    Thanks for the post. Your book sound really good and are definitely on my wishlist. That is a great list of recommendations, thanks for sharing.

  20. Ilona says:

    I love shapeshifter books and was pleased to see my favourite werewolf authors mentioned here (Rhonda Thompson, Patricia Briggs and Tanya Huff).

    I haven’t read any of yours yet but would like to add your books to my keeper shelf as they sound good.

  21. Estella says:

    I have not read any of your work, but your books sound great.

  22. Lisa F. says:

    I’ve always love all things that have to do with paranormal. I love werewolves, vamps, shapeshifters, and well you know the theme. I’ve always thought to be able to shapeshifter in to something else would be such a powerful thing. To shift in to something that flys or to something that could swim in the depths of the ocean. Or even to be a werewolf with the strength and the ability to run fast.

  23. Caffey says:

    Hi Maria! What a great series this sounds!! I remember when I first started reading werewolves in romance and then urban fantasy, I didn’t want to miss any and keep finding new authors to read and its exciting! But I’ve never seen a movie with werewolves. Only Moonlight that was canceled :( and that was vamps. Going to check out the others you list too. Great to meet you

  24. Pam P says:

    Hi Maria, I’ll have to get your books, I like the idea of shapeshifters who can still think and reason when shifted.

  25. IM A OLD READER, AND LET ME TELL YOU ,TRYING TO FIND PARANORMALS 10-20-25YRS AGO, WAS VERY VERY HARD . SO IM HAPPY THERE IS GETTING TO BE MORE AND MORE PARANORMAL AUTHORS.
    I HAVNT READ MARIA YHET, BUT LOOKING FORWARD TO IT AND GLAD TO HAVE SO MANY BOOKS TO PICK FROM NOWADAYS , I LOVE THE CHOICES

  26. Raonaid Luckwell says:

    I have Blood Bargain in my TBR list! Friend of mine sent it up to me to read

  27. Lori T says:

    My favorite werewolf books are probably the Patricia Brigg’s Mercy Thompson series. I love these books.

    I would love to be entered as Maria’s books look great and I would love to read them.

    Have a great weekend.

  28. I’ve read and enjoyed all the books, authors and movies you mentioned being the huge fan of paranormal reads that I am. Your a new author to me but after your post, I’m definitely adding you to my wishlist here and am anxious to read your books.
    By the way, if your looking for other werewolf/shapeshifter books I’m like to recommend authors Lori Handeland, Christine Warren and Karen MacInerney.

  29. :evil:

    Nice essay, Cuz!

    Thought I’d toss out that Samantha Sommersby’s new FORBIDDEN novel, THE TEMPTATION, also has a werewolf. A cowboy werewolf, no less!

  30. pamk says:

    wow love the covers and they sounds like a great read. Never read anything of yours but they sounds like my type of book. I will check them out and put this on my wish list.

  31. I love werewolf stories! These sound cool.

    Christina

  32. Hi Maria!

    These books are on my wishlist! How cool! ;)

    Thanks!

  33. ken mcmillan says:

    Hi, Maria–
    i am glad kate douglas steered me toward your online comments (and, of course, your books). i was taught never to assume, for obvious reasons, but i still assume that all who are interested in werewolves have heard about the up-coming remake of Lon Chaney’s “Wolf Man”movie. Any thoughts about who should and who will play the lead role? hoping for a chance 2 win your books, i am future novelist, ken mcmillan, 3045 hedgerow lane, homewood,IL 60430

  34. Barb P says:

    Hi Maria! Great post. I love your series, and I love those werewolves!

  35. Marie says:

    Awesome covers!

  36. Maria Lima says:

    Wow, thanks to all who’ve stopped by. Nice to see such a great response. :)

    Thanks, Lori for having me guest!

    — Maria

  37. Carmen R says:

    I’ll be checking out your books as well as some of the ones you listed by other authors. I can never have enough books.

  38. Venus Cahill says:

    A writing geek — I love it.
    Great post. I can’t wait to check out your books.

  39. Carla says:

    Werewolves have long been my favorite supernatural creature. Mostly I blame The Howling, because it was the first horror movie I saw and it spawned both my love of horror (including cheesy horror) and my love of werewolves, but I think you’ve really hit on something with the sexuality and danger behind the Little Red Riding Hood story. I mean, I’m familiar with the readings of it, but I’d not thought about how that might later encourage a love of sexy werewolves.

  40. Ley says:

    Another good series with shapeshifters (though not always the main characters) are the Sons of Destiny series by Jean Johnson. So good! I’ll definately add your books to my list, Maria. Thanks for the post.

  41. Karin says:

    I have to agree that there is something about the legends and myths about werewolves that is just completely fascinating. The idea of three different types of animals populating a shifting/were world sounds great. I’m really looking forward to reading your books.